Cannabis plants at outdoor cannabis farm field

Maine Passes Law to Streamline Collection of Marijuana Samples for Testing

March 25th, 2020, Adult-use, Licensing, Regulatory, State

Governor Mills signed into law LD 1545 (SP 482) “An Act Regarding the Collection of Samples for Testing of Adult Use Marijuana and Adult Use Marijuana Products”  on March 23rd. The law passed both chambers of the Maine State Legislature before the Legislature adjourned one month early as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.  The House and Senate did not vote on any other marijuana-related bills, so no other changes will be made to the medical or adult use marijuana programs in Maine this legislative session.

The way the adult use marijuana testing provisions were originally drafted, licensed testing facilities would have been required to travel to every licensed adult use marijuana establishment across the state in order to collect samples and transport the samples back to their licensed facilities for testing.  Given that the majority of the testing facilities that have begun the state licensing and certification processes are located in southern Maine, it would have been nearly impossible to adequately serve marijuana establishment licensees further north.

In order to address this potential bottleneck, the amendment to the law creates a new license category for “sample collectors.” Applicants for a sample collector license do not need to seek local authorization in order to obtain an active license from the state.

The new law will also allow, for a limited time, a cultivation facility licensee, products manufacturing facility licensee, marijuana store licensee, or an employee of a licensee, to collect samples of the licensee’s adult use marijuana or adult use marijuana products for mandatory testing and to deliver those samples directly to a marijuana testing facility for testing.  This authorization is repealed on October 1, 2021.  After that date, only licensed testing facilities and licensed sample collectors will be authorized to collect the necessary samples.

Maine’s Office of Marijuana Policy announced that it has already begun drafting the necessary regulations to implement these changes to the adult use marijuana law. 

For more information, please contact a member of Drummond Woodsum’s licensing and regulatory division.